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Hiya!!

Welcome to my blog, this is where I share my real life adventures online. I don't have a focus for this blog yet, because I easily get bored of things.  So, enjoy my journey and rando hobbies.

"To infinity and beyond." Buzz Lightyear

Carnival Cruise 2017 With Fam Bam: Valor

Carnival Cruise 2017 With Fam Bam: Valor

Hey Sloabie Nation!!

It's been a hot minute since I've updated on social media, and if you follow me on my FB page, you would have seen how inactive I've been these past three weeks.  I wished I could share something more profound like "Oh I needed a social media detox" or what not.  I didn't need one, I so happened got one because I was super sick.  The first week of May I was pretty ill from a weird bug, the second week I was getting better but then I went on a Cruise with my family and the last week I came back from the Cruise and caught another bug that bed ridden me.  The last time I've gotten sick was during my Europe trip 2015; but it was nothing like this.  As far as I know, a lot more people got sick and it's just something in Texas--maybe it's the weather change? Who knows, but boy am I glad to be out of the woods.  My congestion is killer though---but at least I am out of bed and moving around!!!!

In between illnesses though, I did get to go on a family Vacation and what is a better than going a Cruise with Family.? No seriously, if you want a stress free family vacay--I really suggest a cruise and here are my reasons why. 

  1. It's fairly inexpensive in comparison to any other family trips, especially if you are paying for you mooching kids. LOL

  2. You might be stuck on a boat, but since the ship is so huge--you won't always see each other.

  3. You are not forced to do every activity together.

  4. It's nice to do your own activities in small groups, and then update each other at dinner.  It's a good way to reset as a family from all the daily hustle and bustle.

  5. Room is included with ticket.

  6. ALL YOUR FOOD IS INCLUDED WITH THE CRUISE.

  7. When you port, you can book excursions that are perfectly safe, and timed so that everyone will have supervision at all times.  

  8. Kids can hang out with other kids, so parents can be free from "watching" their kids on vacation.

  9. You really don't have to worry about anything, just be happy and sun bathe.

  10. SOCIAL MEDIA DETOX.  You are stuck on a ship and do not have access to the cancers that might be floating about the interweb.

CARNIVAL VALOR

May 11th 4:00 p.m - May 15th 9:00 a.m

Normally cruises ranges from 4 nights to 7 nights and some can be even longer.  For my family, we chose to do a 4 night cruise that would accommodate everyone's schedule. With this cruise, we were able to stop by Cozumel's Port which is one of the prettier and even more popular ports that Carnival stops at.  Keep in mind, the more nights you go, the more ports you will be stopping at and that will also affect price.  For us the ticket prices ranged anywhere from $390-$450 a person.  If you think about it, food, entertainment, rooming, and fun for all 4 nights--that's actually really inexpensive.  When was the last time you went on a trip with flights, food, hotel costs and entertainment cost averaging out to be less than $100 a day? Just saying, it feels like an ultimate pampering and relaxation vacation without paying an arm and a leg to do it with family members.  The reason why prices ranges so much is due to cabin sizing and views. Like hotels, a nicer view or a bigger room would just simply cost more.  Also, how many people shoved into a room affects prices as well.  Some rooms, can hold up to 5 people and the cheapest tickets I've found have been $200/person (season affects this BTW).  I can proudly say, I've been on 6 Carnival Cruises ranging from prices, amount of days, and ship.  All and all, Valor would have to rank as one on my less favorite ships and here is why....and this is only based on the other 5 cruises I've been on and my experiences with them.  

  1.  On past ships, I felt like they were better at providing toiletries such as samples of toothpastes, shower cap, q-tips and etc.
  2. The activities were limited.
  3. The prizes of some of the activities were lacking.  On other ships, they gave out free champagne or alcohol on a lot of the activities/competitions
  4. There were only two comedians, I remember some 4 night cruises would switch out the comedians when they ported. Then you would have two fresh faces for the last two nights of the cruise.
  5. Wished they had more night shows.
  6. Momzies pointed out this one, but during Dinner--they'd actively sing and dance at the end of dinner and Momzies felt like they didn't do as much of it; and she missed it when she was on the other ships. LOL She's on cruise #3 BTW. What a pro!!!
  7. Too much trivia and bingo. Not enough Karaoke! 
  8. Dinner Menu was lacking and needed better options.
  9. Lobster was not served during formal night??? WHAT!!!!
  10. No souvenir drinks like coconut monkey, or the large hollowed out pineapples, or the icon Wale Tail Ship Cups.
  11. Ship felt, and looked older.

HOWEVERRRRRRRRRRR...

lf you have never been on a cruise before, you would find that Valor is an amazing ship.  Don't let my experience here ruin it for you because regardless of how I felt, it's only because I've been on other ships that over exceeded my expectations.  This didn't meet my familiar expectations with Carnival accommodations, but that's because I am a spoiled prick who've had 5 previous cruises under her belt. Essentially, I am bias AF. Even so, I still encourage you to not be turned away on booking a trip with Valor because I still enjoyed it, but I did want to point out these few things just so Carnival is aware that as a frequent cruiser, we are also aware of some changes.  I do understand that in the past, Carnival have had some trouble. Do you guys remember the Carnival Triumph fiasco of 2013 (The Poop Ship)? I've known people who were on that ship---and let me just say, I am sure Carnival took a huge financial hit for that.  Then the Liberty started to have issues; and I don't know if people realized this. It takes about 20+ years for a ship to get built.  You are building a floating city; and not only does it cost a lot of money to do so, it costs a lot of money to run, and every day that ship is not sailing--it's not making money.  I watched a documentary on how most ships break even with ticket sales; and what they bank on is the purchases people buy on board, alcohol and the casino.  Some ships come back in the hole--and you know what? It kind of sucks; but that's business right? So, I do understand the cutbacks.  Even so, with the cutbacks, it's still a FABULOUS and fun experience. Trust me, if you just need to disconnect, be fed all day long and lounge around half naked--this is the way to do it.

Also....................

Living near Galveston, a port for Carnival Cruise Lines--you hear a lot about the cruise lines and all of their problems. If you had missed out, Carnival Liberty a sister ship was having some power problems; delaying the routes and causing schedules to be off.  They replaced the Liberty sails, with Valor which I believe home port use to be in Florida (fact check me please!) Anyways, since I've been on other ships, I was pretty excited to check out Valor because it was Dry Docked for renovations meaning the freaking ship was DOCKED for repairs. I know it doesn't seem like a big deal; but if you've seen these vessels up close; it's legit a little city.  I mean, it holds over 2,900+ guests and 1,000+ crew members. There are cities and towns with that many people living in it! Blows my frigg'n mind yo!! Maybe I am just fascinated by the ships and that's why I continue to come back to them? If you think about it, this particular ship is bigger than the iconic Titanic!  So, even if some of it's engine troubles, and sailing fails, I still give Carnival some grace because I've been on many cruises with them and I have enjoyed each and every one of them.  I've never got off a ship and was like "Ugh , what a horrible vacation" ya know?  One key thing about the Valor is that they had a "Chocolate Day" where there was a slew of desserts and OMG chocolate everything.  I Died, Went to heaven and told the Angels to get on the Valor ship because chocolate day was actual heaven.  There were some great part about this ship and here are my reasons why!!! 

  1. They had 24hr soft serve ice-cream and it wasn't the shit stuff you get from the chinese buffets! It was dense and creamy and so good.  My skin has been horrible lately because I did binge on the soft serve even though I do break out from dairy; but it was so hard to avoid a cone every time I walked by.
  2. You will NEVER go hungry. They have sit down meals, buffet meals, little specific "bar" like the pizza bar and my favorite on  this ship was the Salsa bar that they had next to the "Taco Stand."
  3. There are 4 hot tubs on this ship! I've noticed that the others did not have as many.
  4. They had a slide, mini golf, a gym and all sorts of cool amenities on the ship.
  5. Animal Towel Folding class was free!! On other ships, they charge $5 or something for the class. Actually a lot of the activities that are usually not free on other ships are free on this ship.
  6. The Mongolian Wok was Momzies favorite. It was her way of getting in some Asian foods because sometimes Western food got to be too much for her.
  7. A few nights, they did serve Vietnamese Veggie Rolls and Momzies was super excited; she's like "let's put in the suggestion box that they should have a noodle/pho bar next time" LOL.
  8. Love having my cabin cleaned every day, and even twice a day as well!!! 
  9. Don't feel like you need to get a nice room, just get a room to get on the ship and enjoy your time on the other community decks!
  10. It was a Mother's day cruise, so they had a few Mother's day activities and one night during dinner they handed all of the Mom's carnations.  In our midst we had two Moms in our gang.

"I don't care what anyone says, cruise ships are modern marvels!"

In conclusion...

If you haven't cruised before, take a damn cruise!! It's a once in a life time experience, or for me 6 times already. Trying to get to 10...

Some Family Photos of Broskies and Momzies. Ba opted out since it's busy season for him at work and he didn't want Puppy Brother to be alone.  

So tell me, what are you planning this summer for your summer trip? Any fun trips coming along the way? Share down below, and let me know if you have cruised before. Which ship, how you liked it and etc.  Hope you guys enjoyed this little extra bit of me and my family.

Rock On Sloabie Nation

 

 

 

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